Mural paying tribute to victims of the New Cross fire unveiled


A mural in remembrance of the victims of the New Cross fire has been erected in South London.

The three-and-a-half metre mural was unveiled with many in attendance, as the artwork coincided with the week of the 41st year since the tragic fire resulted in the lives of 14 young people being lost. It was organised by Richard Simpson, his wife Sharon and family, joint owners of the Cummin Up Caribbean Takeaway which is situated next to New Cross Gate station and only a few minutes from where the devastating fire took place.

It was an especially poignant development for Richard given his relationship with one of the victims of the fire. Richard had been friends with Glenton Powell, who at only 16, died following injuries sustained in the fire.

"We lost friends. I lost Glenton Powell who used to eat in my house and watch television in my house. We are all personally affected and the voices of those who walk around with trauma are not being heard.

"We are going to do this for our friends, those who were playing the music, those who were the celebrants, those who were enjoying themselves, and we are going to mark this now on New Cross Road, where it took place."

Richard Simpson, speaking during the unveiling

Earlier in the week a memorial service was held at St Mary’s Church in Lewisham. Two previous inquests into the fire returned open verdicts but the overall handling of the investigation by the police has remained a source of deep pain.

Mayowa Ayodele